It’s Never Easy

I have fallen way behind my 2017 schedule. I’m not sure how to catch up and yes, it’s frustrating. I have been managing to puke out around 500 words a day of my second book. I know it doesn’t sound like much but its hard to see how I could write much more than that. Perhaps a dedicated day where I commit to writing 5,000 words? That would definitely give me a push to the finish. My estimate for the first version of my second book is around 55,000 words. I think I am around 35,000 words right now so still 20,000 words to go. At 500 words a day, that would take 40 more days to get to version one. Far too long! I need some big days to blow this out. Even at 500 words a day though, I have to confess, it’s kind of cool seeing the story come together.

The other issue is that while I received feedback on hero, my first book, I have barely started incorporating it. I have so much to do there. I’m not sure why I haven’t moved forward on that since its so close to done. Shame on me!

As a writer you have to commit to your craft and to yourself. I’ll do that here. After nine years, I owe it to myself to bring my first book to a wonderful, high quality conclusion giving the readers a book they can cherish. No delay. I will incorporate some editing of ‘hero’ into each day going forward in order to get it done.

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Posted in Editing conundrum, The Writing Game

Running through Mud but at Least it Looks Like the Right Direction

My writing style, to put it kindly, is unique. Others might describe it as haphazard or even disgraceful ;-). I’m okay with any of those terms really. There is no one right way.

For my second book, ‘The Boys of Brighton Beach’ which is Indian historical fiction I’ve been kind of keeping up with my 500 words a day goal. However, this is simply puking up words for each chapter that I decide to work on. It doesn’t mean it reads well or more importantly that I’ve done any significant historical research. I might already know a little bit about 19th century ships or schools or whatever and I’ll use that in my 500 words or I’ll do a minimal amount of research to have something to write about. You’ll note in very rough draft that details feel minimal because I avoid specifics about things I don’t know a ton about. I’m just trying to get the story down.

When I finish the very rough draft, I intend on very thoroughly researching whatever’s appropriate for each chapter. I will keep an inventory of these historical details so I can recycle wherever possible but ultimately, I will use that research to add beautiful details to the very rough draft.

Is this the most sensible way to write a book? Probably not but it works for me. I’m sure you have a method that works for you. Don’t let someone tell you that their method is better but also don’t be afraid to tinker to see if you can the most efficient method for you.

Keep writing!

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Posted in The Writing Game

Not perfect but I’ll take it

I haven’t been feeling well but I can’t accept excuses. While it hasn’t been everyday, I have been writing more of late momentum seems to have returned. I think what really kicked my ass was seeing what I had planned to write for 2017 versus what I had gotten done. Multiple books was my goal and it seemed possible in January but I’m way behind. I have pieces of various books written all at different stages but I need to push to get them finished. While this still might be wishful thinking here is my finish schedule for 2017 books:

“hero” upload by 5/31

Status: 70,000 words undergoing final editing

“The Boys of Brighton Beach” upload by 6/30

Status: 30,000 words being written. Target 70,000 words

“This Time is Different” upload by 8/15

Status: I’ve done plenty of research and have copied relevant content into my document. Word count is 20,000+ with a target of 40,000 words.

“The Road to Startup City” upload by 9/15

“Confessions of a failure” upload by 10/31

Status: Outline with minimal content is done

“20/20 Foresight: The Stephen Greyhawk journals” upload by 12/31

Status: Rough outline in my head but nothing further than that

 

So, that’s where I stand as of today. Just gonna try to do whatever I can each day. I hope to plan for a big writing day soon. I want to sit down for an entire day until I write 10,000 words. If I did that just twice a month, I could really push my writing forward but we’ll see.

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Small Steps and Overcoming

All authors go through the up and down. It’s just part of the deal. I’ve recently been in the down part of the cycle as an author. I’ve not really been writing. I’ve received back feedback on my first book, but haven’t been incorporating those changes in though I am anxious to finish the book after nine years. There’s no simple reason why. Sometimes being a writer is draining and you need to step away I guess. I don’t know. I managed to write 500 words yesterday for the first time in quite a while. Finding anything that can keep you going is key.

Obviously, I blew through my goal of finishing version one of my second book by April 6th. My new target is May 15 if I can keep writing.

I will try to start editing my first book today. My hope is to have it done by the same May 15 deadline. Is that realistic? No idea. We’ll see, I guess.

Sometimes it sucks to be a writer. You feel like a failure some days and its hard to push on. Still, if you believe in your story, you should push on. Just a little bit each day will add up. That’s all I’m trying to do at this point. Not focused on the big goals, just small steps.

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Lots of Work, But no Progress

I’ve been busy doing lots of things, but nothing related to writing unfortunately. My visit to see my parents in Chicago is partly to blame but I own most of this. I haven’t felt motivated to write. Not sure why. I continue to work on my author analytics app ‘Inscriba’ but even that didn’t see a lot of work.

I need to get back on the horse so to speak. Here’s my pledge. I will try to target writing five hundred words each day starting tomorrow. Once I get back in the rhythm I will increase to 1,000 words per day. I would like to target more, but I don’t think it is realistic. As a reminder, I am writing my book ‘The Boys of Brighton Beach’. Additionally, I am getting feedback on my first book ‘hero’ by April 6 from my Meetup group. Because I fell off the wagon so to speak, I will have to double up on my work.

Originally, I had planned to stop any writing while I was incorporating feedback into ‘hero’ but because I have fallen behind my schedule, I will have to keep writing while editing the first book. Not ideal as any writer will tell you. I am nervous to see how much rewriting I will have to do. That will also play a role in what’s possible.

In the meantime, small steps as I try to regain some momentum. Nobody said it would be easy. Maybe this is why so many people quit? It helps me to break large segments into smaller, less intimidating pieces of work. Try it. It might help you.

If you want to be a writer, write every day đŸ™‚

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Down Down Down

It’s been a rough week. I’ve been busy working on my book analytics app ‘Inscriba’. It’s an app to help indie authors use analytics to improve sales through analytics. I’m not a very good developer but I have been plodding my way through the process. Anyway, that app has been eating up my time and so have fallen behind on my daily word commitment. I’m a bad author!

It’s just part and parcel of being an author, Writing is a battle. It’s a battle you have to fight everyday. Some battles you lose. Still, I always remind myself that you can’t be a writer if you don’t write. Every day. I’ll try to get back on the horse. As a reminder, I was about halfway done with my second book when I stopped.

The process after the rough draft is done will still be; first run through 1) add description 2) fill in story gaps 3) fix obvious mistakes and second run through will be putting the book through an online editor. The third run through will be handing off the book to an actual editor. Finally, I will have friends and family and other interested parties read the book before it is released. I believe that will catch as many problems as possible.

I’ve been wavering on what to write after the second fiction book, but non-fiction seems likely. It’s a good break. I am going to do my best to make up for lost time and try to hit my April 6th deadline to finish the rough draft of my second book. Why April 6 you might ask? That’s when I get group feedback on my first book ‘hero’ and I will have to focus on that to incorporate changes. It never stops. Ha ha.

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Highs and Lows

So, previously I reported on the tough feedback I received on my first book. I’m glad I didn’t publish it. Anyway, my goal on words had been 1,000 per day. I was good for awhile at keeping that pace, but I might have gotten a little burned out. I’ve missed writing the last few days. I will try to get some done today.

I’m at about 27,000 words on my second book, “The Boys of Brighton Beach” which is Indian historical fiction. I have a list of events that should happen throughout the story and have been picking a couple each day to hammer out. The words aren’t pretty. I’m basically just puking them out but at least I have them documented. Putting them in separate word docs allows me to decide later the order. Yes, I know Scrivener does this very thing better, I just don’t have the patience to learn Scrivener right now. Later, maybe.

Based on the events I have left and about 500 words per event, I estimate that the first rough draft will be about 54,000 words meaning I’m about halfway. I’m still hoping to finish the rough draft by the time I get feedback from my first book from my whole Meetup group on April 6. The bad part is that I’m about 20,000 words short of where I want to be. I’m hoping that my first editing run through, I will find missing events and add lots of description which will add a good amount of words to the total. We shall see.

I’m still anxiously waiting for the rest of the feedback on my first book ‘hero’ to come in. God I’m nervous!

On a personal note, I recently went to get an eye exam. My Lasik surgery from 16 years ago is wearing off. I needed to order glasses so I did. It’s the end of an era or simply the start of a new one.

 

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Posted in Ups and Downs